2007-11-21 / News

Boat yard lease goes to bid

By Tom Shevlin

After several executive workshops, the town administrator has recommended that councilors place the town's lease for Dutch Harbor Boat Yard out for bid.

The lease, which expired in March 2006, had been renewed on a year-to-year basis in order to provide the current lessees the opportunity to meet their lease payments in a timely way. That, according to town officials, has not been demonstrated.

Bruce Keiser reported in October that he and Town Solicitor Peter Ruggiero would begin negotiations with Dutch Harbor Boat Yard (DHBY) over outstanding debts owed to the town.

DHBY had accrued debts of $27,009 in lease payments and other costs to the town. Since taking the matter up at recent council meetings, several payments have been made by DHBY as well as a proposal to remediate the rest of the debt.

Barbara Patterson, co-owner of the Dutch Harbor Boat Yard, pleaded with councilors to reconsider their decision and asked "for the opportunity to work this out."

Patterson said that the town's decision could do "irreparable harm" to the business.

Councilors, however, decided to proceed with the request for proposals, noting that the current lessees were free to engage in the bidding process and further stipulated that the town would continue to entertain discussions with the current operators until the bidding process is finalized, which could happen as soon as the first week in January.

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